Gone with the Wind
Ultimate Collector's Edition, 70th Anniversary Ultimate Collector's Edition, Collector's Edition
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Period romance. War epic. Family saga. Popular fiction adapted with crowd-pleasing brilliance. Star acting aglow with charisma and passion. Moviemaking craft at its height. These are sublimely joined in the words Gone with the Wind.
This dynamic and durable screen entertainment of the Civil War-era South comes home with the renewed splendor of a New 70th-Anniversary Digital Transfer capturing a higher-resolution image from Restored Picture Elements than ever before possible. David O. Selznick’s monumental production of Margaret Mitchell’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book can now enthrall new generations of home viewers with a majestic vibrance that befits one of Hollywood’s greatest achievements.
David O. Selznick wanted Gone with the Wind to be somehow more than a movie, a film that would broaden the very idea of what a film could be and do and look like. In many respects he got what he worked so hard to achieve in this 1939 epic (and all-time box-office champ in terms of tickets sold), and in some respects he fell far short of the goal. While the first half of this Civil War drama is taut and suspenseful and nostalgic, the second is ramshackle and arbitrary. But there's no question that the film is an enormous achievement in terms of its every resource--art direction, color, sound, cinematography--being pushed to new limits for the greater glory of telling an American story as fully as possible. Vivien Leigh is still magnificently narcissistic, Olivia de Havilland angelic and lovely, Leslie Howard reckless and aristocratic. As for Clark Gable: we're talking one of the most vital, masculine performances ever committed to film. --Tom Keogh
Also on the disc
The Ultimate Collector's Edition of Gone with the Wind is beautifully restored for Blu-ray, showing off how good a movie can look even many decades after its release. The second Blu-ray disc has a wide variety of bonus material. New for the Ultimate Collector's Edition are two 2009 documentaries: 1939: Hollywood's Greatest Year is narrated by Kenneth Branagh and summarizes the famous films that debuted that year, including Gone with the Wind, The Wizard of Oz, Stagecoach, and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington; "Gone with the Wind: The Legend Lives On" is a 33-minute study of the legacy of the movie, with interviews of film critics, Ted Turner, former Georgia Senator Max Cleeland, and surviving cast member Anne Rutherford (Careen O'Hara). Also new for the UCE is Moviola: The Scarlett O'Hara War, a 1980 television movie that dramatizes the casting of Gone with the Wind, starring Tony Curtis, William H. Macy, Sharon Gless, Morgan Brittany, and others. Much of the rest was on the 2004 four-disc edition, including the commentary track by Rudy Behlmer and documentaries on Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, other actors, and the filming and restoration of the movie. The third disc is a double-sided standard DVD of the documentary MGM: The Lion Roars, and the UCE comes in an oversize box with a beautiful photo book of stills and theatrical posters, reproductions of studio correspondence and a publicity booklet, a soundtrack CD sampler, and art cards. --David Horiuchi
Stills from Gone with the Wind (70th Anniversary Ultimate Collector's Edition) (click for larger image)
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Limited of 150'000 pieces.
Picture quality is amazing. - I think it's the best ever I have seen on bluRay, and this for an old movie.
Bonus features: the set is wonderful with many interesting documentaries and interviews. Specially very interesting is: "Melanie Remember" with Olivia De Havilland. She talk with so much love about her experience during the making of the movie.
Thanks Olivia De Havilland for that Interview you gave in 2004 and thanks to WB for the wonderful release!
The package, which comes in a fancy box, includes a thin hardcover book with posters, cast and production features. There are copies of not terribly interesting memos from David O. Selznick. There is also a copy of the original 1939 premiere program, a set of watercolor set prints, a bonus CD soundtrack sampler, and a 6 hour documentary on a bonus CD- MGM: When the Lion Roars. It is labeled as a "limited edition" xxx of 150,000, so don't expect it to go rare any time soon.
The Extras DVD contains a goldmine of material. In addition to the 1939 documentary, there is Gone With the Wind: The Legend Lives On, a s dreadful and inauthentic segment from the TV movie Moviola-The Scarlett O'Hara War that doesn't belong here, and The Making of a Legend: Gone With the Wind. There are also reflections from Olivia de Havilland, documentaries Gable: The King Remembered and Vivien Leigh: Scarlett and Beyond. There is a documentary on the restoration process, films of premieres, trailers, foreign language samples, etc. or just about everything a fan could ever want.
THE BOOK; Considering the fact that both major characters lack much in the way of scruples, they don't have much happy time together, and they wind up going their separate ways it is miraculous that this story could wind up being one of the great romantic films of all time. Before this viewing I decided to read all 1000+ pages of the book to become familiar with the source material. What is truly surprising for a Hollywood production is how faithful it is to the book. The only major exception, apart from a few missing characters, is the fact that in the book Scarlett had a child by each of her first two husbands.
THE CAST: Audiences at the time anticipated Gable in the role of Rhett, and he is dead-on target. It is impossible to think of anyone else playing the role or the film being the success it was without him. He was so good he was taken for granted at the time and passed over for an Oscar in favor of the gooey Mr. Chips. Vivien Leigh is Scarlett to the core. Olivia de Havilland as Melanie and Leslie Howard as Ashley Wilkes are both equally perfect. One should also mention Hattie McDaniel, who won an Oscar for her great performance as Mammy. The cast truly makes this picture the exceptional film that it is, under Victor Fleming's smooth direction, and David O. Selznick's perfect casting and supervision of the entire film.
Today it is mind-boggling to know that most of this was filmed on a Hollywood backlot. When the camera pulls back on the scene of a vast number of Confederate wounded on an Atlanta street you know those are all real people, which today would be created digitally. All in all it is a milestone in every respect. If you care at all about movies you have to have this.
Most recent customer reviews
restoration work is unique realization. Five stars no hesitation.